From 9to5Mac’s “Apple hires former Hulu/Quibi Hollywood exec as it explores Apple TV+ bundle deals” posted Monday:
In addition to expanding the amount of content on the service, Apple has shown an interest in bundling Apple TV+ with other properties. In August, the company launched a heavily-discounted Showtime + CBS combo subscription for Apple TV+ members. It is also reportedly preparing a mega Apple content services bundle, set to launch alongside the iPhone 12.
Today, The Telegraph reported on a new hire that seems to be related to these initiatives. Apple has hired Tim Connolly to join Apple’s video division. In his former roles at Hulu and Quibi, Connolly was tasked with striking major distribution deals.
For example at Hulu, Connolly led negotiations with Spotify to bundle the music service with Hulu at no extra cost to the customer. He also worked on Hulu’s live TV deals and led advertising and partnerships at Quibi.
Although his exact role at Apple is unclear, it would make sense for him to be working on special deals and partnerships for Apple TV+ and Apple TV Channels, similar to the recently-announced Showtime and CBS offering. There have also been rumors that Apple is exploring an expansion of TV+ into live programming.
In “Ex-Disney, Hulu, Quibi executive Tim Connolly joins Apple TV+,” AppleInsider adds…
Connolly is unusual for a television executive in that he has extensive experience in technology. That includes an extended stint at Ericsson where he was various responsibilities for managing the company’s hardware and software. After that, he joined Disney and while he left before Disney+ launched, he was chiefly responsible for digital and new product development.
My take: Apple is serious about this TV+ thing. And it’s developed a knack for picking up distressed Hollywood talent.